Heart of Darkness (English Literature) Paperback – 30 Sep 2007
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`Conrad makes it painfully clear that the heart of darkness can reside within us all'
Distinguished British stage, television and film actor David Horovitch reads Heart of Darkness with the gravitas the work requires. --Joe DiMercurio --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
'One of the most compelling and influential works of English literature in the last century' - Independent --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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# Publisher: Public Domain Books (9 Jan 2006)
# Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
# ASIN: B000JQU7A8
Reviews between editions seem to be frequently amalgamated and so it is important to note this is about the free (at time of writing) version.
Please also note that this review is about the 'edition', not the actual story itself and is therefore no reflection on Conrad's writing.
Having made myself clear on what I am reviewing (hopefully!) then my opinion is this:
Download some samples of other versions and pay some small amount for a better text. I struggled with half of this version before resorting to the actual book that I already owned. There are two major problems:
1. The style of writing and the protagonist Marlow's delivery makes very frequent use of dashes (en or em rules). This Kindle edition uses double hyphens, viz --, with no spaces, as in 'There were cases of them down at the coast--cases--piled up--burst--split!', which makes reading awkward and detracts from the narrative style.
2. Carriage returns are used frequently in error and seemingly at random. It is possible to identify new paragraphs as they are correctly indented but, having a line finishing after the first word for example, implies the end of a paragraph. However, the non-indented start of the next line shows that the text was meant to be continuous. Checking several examples with the Penguin text edition shows that these frequent carriage returns are, indeed, in error.
This edition is not recommended for reading on the Kindle.
The themes are no less profound. I particularly enjoyed Conrad's critique of Western civilization - comparing the tribesmen with the supposedly superior whites and comparing the Congo with the Thames of 1000 years ago.
For all its virtues, this book is quite disorientating and requires careful reading. At several points I had to reread pages to determine who was talking to whom. In particular, the point at which Kurtz finally makes his appearance is (perhaps intentionally) skimmed over without fanfare. I feel that another read or two is in order.
This Penguin Classics edition comes with some extras. Some, like the analysis of changes made between the typescript and the book, are for enthusiasts only. Others, such as the timeline and explanatory notes are essential to any reader. It's a slim volume that is appropriately sombre-looking.
A genuine classic.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
this book only confirms that I don't like Conrad's style. For me a good book is not having a story and write long, beautiful sentences. Read morePublished 19 days ago by laros76
Although the content and story is as is, this version has no foreword, preface or page numbers and is only one step from being printed on a few sheets of A4.... Read morePublished 26 days ago by S. Rowe
This 'edition' was definitely made on Microsoft Word, and looks to have been printed and bound in someone's office. Do not buy.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
read this a few years ago, it still chills me when i hear the title.
It's a morbid, dark book that has more suggestion of brutality than it displays. Read more
As a yacht anchors in the Thames and the crew settle down one of them, Charles Marlow, recites an experience he had when he took to sailing on freshwater. Read morePublished 2 months ago by M. Dowden
This is completely UN-annotated, unless you count the one-paragraph blurb on the back, and the 2.5 page introduction to Joseph Conrad. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Mr C A Sadler
by Joseph Conrad
James McCormick's review
Apr 19, 16 · edit
it was amazing
This one had been... Read more